The Directorate General for Education and Culture (DG EAC) is the executive branch of the European Union responsible for policy on education, culture, youth, languages, and sport. DG EAC also supports these issues through a variety of projects and programmes, notably Creative Europe and Erasmus+. It is led by a Commissioner, Androulla Vassiliou, and a Director General, Xavier Prats Monné, who report to the European Parliament.
The DG's education and training activities focus primarily on policy cooperation; helping countries learn from one another and work together to improve education across Europe. The DG also manages the Erasmus + programme, which aims to improve education and training in Europe, while providing people, at any stage of their life, with learning opportunities.
DG EAC manages the Creative Europe Programme, which finances hundreds of programmes in support of artists, actors, and musicians, among others. The aim of DG EAC's activities on culture is to promote cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue, culture as a catalyst for creativity, and European culture as a vital part of external relations.
DG EAC's youth activities aim to give young people a voice and a stake in society, strengthening dialogue with policy makers and ensuring they are represented in EU policy-making. Initiatives in support of this include the Youth in Action programme, which promotes the ideals of citizenship, solidarity, and tolerance among citizens from 13-30 through a variety of projects, voluntary activities, and exchange schemes.
The EU currently has 24 official languages and at least another 60 regional and minority languages. DG EAC develops strategies that promote language learning and linguistic diversity to give citizens more opportunities and strengthen cultural identities. It supports the mainstreaming of multilingualism throughout the various EU policies and programmes.
DG EAC's activities in the field of sport are designed to increase the participation of citizens in physical activities, as well as increasing the availability of sporting opportunities. This role includes providing sporting facilities for those with handicaps, as well as reducing discrimination. The DG also contributes to the fight against doping, organised crime, and fraud in sport.
DG EAC also supports the Marie Skłodowska-Curie actions; an initiative designed to support the career development and training of research worldwide. DG EAC does this predominantly through research grants and mobility opportunities to researchers.
The European Commissioner for Education and Culture, Androulla Vassiliou, provides the political leadership for the Directorate General (DG), executing the mandate of the President and answering to the College of Commissioners, itself held accountable to the European Parliament.
The Director General of the DG, Xavier Prats Monné, is responsible for ensuring the execution of the political mandate, as well as reporting to the Commissioner, providing policy recommendations, and ensuring the sound management of the DG on a day-to-day basis.